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Why India regrets attack

delhi Updated: Mar 22, 2011 02:03 IST
Jayanth Jacob
Jayanth Jacob
Hindustan Times
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New Delhi believes that the air strikes on Libya by the US, French and British forces were carried out in haste and that the disproportionate use of force could come in the way of finding a lasting solution to the crisis in the north African country.

India’s statement deploring the air strike was the second, coming after Russia’s and much ahead of China’s on Monday. The three countries, along with Germany and Brazil, had abstained from voting on the UN resolution authorising a no-fly zone over Libya and the subsequent aerial attack.

India believes that the UN should ensure a ceasefire to halt the continuing violence in Libya and protect the people. The UN should have waited for two reports — one from the special envoy of the UN Secretary General and another from representatives of the African Union -- to assess the ground situation and political efforts in play before going in for drastic measures, an official source told HT.

It is in this context that external affairs minister SM Krishna criticised the attack on Libya.

"I am sure the air strikes will lead to more harm to innocent civilians and diplomatic missions... We call on all countries to abjure violence and the use of threat. India will exert influence in international fora to prevent further violence," Krishna said in his statement.

The statement came even as coalition forces launched more air strikes involving fighter jets and missiles against air defence targets in Libya.

New Delhi is also concerned about the safety of 2,000 of its nationals who have stayed back in Libya voluntarily.

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